Posts Tagged ‘Suicide’

Suicide prevention month finds two prominent depression and suicide prevention leaders committing suicide!



Jarrid Wilson, a Southern California megachurch pastor and mental health advocate, died by suicide Monday.

“Wilson, 30, was associate pastor at Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, under Pastor Greg Laurie. He co-founded Anthem of Hope, a mental health nonprofit helping people dealing with depression and suicidal thoughts. He is survived by his wife, Julianne, and two sons, Finch and Denham.”






“The executive director of counseling and psychological services at the University of Pennsylvania died by suicide Monday morning in Philadelphia, officials said.

Gregory Eells became the head of the department at UPENN in March.”




My two cents: WOW! I am perplexed on many levels, extreme sadness is one emotion.

How does religion handle a suicide like this? Usually your condemned, a mortal sin in the Catholic Church. This pastor lived an exemplary life of giving and service.

On a personal level, they had a role similar to mine. The pastor mentored others with depression and mental illness, like this blog and my mindfulness group.

This is conflicting for me, I have compassion for their struggles but my father would win if I committed suicide.

All those that follow me or have been helped by me would be impacted negatively.

If you are the leader and committ suicide, have you considered those your leaving behind?

In the confusing throws of negative thought and unhealthy emotions reality slips away.

One thought dominates after a while, we never know what another is experiencing or thinking.

I have been touched by suicide in my mindfulness group. It is devastating for the survivors.

I wonder if one of the Dalai Lamas has ever committed suicide?

Next post will be on Dalai Lamas physician who was captured by the Chinese and tortured. An Amazing story.

Please share your thoughts.



Military Suicides top record despite government’s best efforts: we have to do better

Patrice Sullivan, whose boyfriend, a marine, died from suicide, helps remove 5,000 small U.S. flags representing suicides of active and veteran members of the military line the national mall , Wednesday.

Washington Times by Gabriella Munoz



The disturbing number has held steady for years: Roughly 20 U.S. military veterans take their own lives each day.

The Defense Department reported a significant uptick last year in the number of active-duty and reserve men and women who died by suicide. The suicide rate among veterans ages 18 to 34, some of whom served in Iraq and Afghanistan, shot up dramatically from 2015 to 2016, data show.

Top officials from the Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs, joined by specialists from across the private sector, gathered this week to search for solutions to what has become one of the most persistent, painful and frustrating crises facing the military community. Although the nation has grappled with veteran suicides for more than a century — officials note that some of the first academic research on the issue appeared in 1915 — many of the core challenges remain.

Trump administration officials say a key factor is a reservation about addressing mental health care.

“There’s been a stigma throughout the history of our country that I still think you see manifestations of today,” VA Secretary Robert Wilkie told The Washington Times in an exclusive interview on the sidelines of the conference, a biannual gathering co-hosted by the VA and the Pentagon.

“In the military, there’s always been a reluctance to address those issues,” he said. “But with many issues, certainly complicated ones, just starting to talk about it is a step forward. People would run from this label, mental illness. Families would panic, communities would panic.

“It’s amazing to me that we’re not any farther along,” he added.

Beneath the startling figures on veteran suicides is an especially troubling number: Of the 20 who die by suicide each day, roughly two-thirds have had little or no regular contact with the VA. That suggests an unwillingness to seek help or a lack of knowledge about where to look.

In other cases, VA facilities have become the sites of tragedy. Earlier this year, three veterans died by suicide at VA facilities over the span of just five days.

Two took their lives in the parking lots outside VA buildings; a third reportedly shot himself in the waiting room of a Texas VA clinic in front of hundreds of onlookers.

The series of dramatic deaths brought an even brighter spotlight to an issue that already had become a top priority for the Trump administration. In June, the White House launched the President’s Roadmap to Empower Veterans and End the National Tragedy of Suicide (PREVENTS) task force, an initiative aimed at developing and implementing the first governmentwide national strategy to confront the root causes of veteran suicides.

Continue reading

Do we ever know?



We make many judgments about the world and how we fit into it.

Our “Ego” keeps score how we rate in our circle of contact.

When we walk into a room of people, our “Ego” assesses the hierarchy. We feel superior to some and beneath a few.

Life destroys some of these myths for us. When Anthony Bourdain hangs himself, my evaluation system crumbles.

My judgment of Anthony is completely wrong.

How could someone who had it all, talent, celebrity, money, brains, writing skills and happiness, hang themselves.

Oh wait, someone I thought was happy, committed suicide in a gruesome way.

Still, I ask myself, what could lead this talented man to hang himself.

He sure seemed to have it all!

Life seems happier, easier for some, maybe that judgment is inaccurate.

Hard not to compare our life to others, but easy to let that comparison go with practice.



USAF Orders Stand-Down to Combat Rising Suicide Rate 8/1/2019 ​––BRIAN EVERSTINE


This story was updated on Aug. 1, 2019, at 1:04 p.m. EST.

Air Force units will stand down for one day this summer to address the rising problem of suicides, which Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein said is “an adversary that is killing more of our airmen than any enemy on the planet.”

As of the end of July, 79 suicides had occurred in the Air Force in 2019 —nearly as many as were recorded last year in about half the time. The service saw about 100 suicides per year in each of the last five years.

Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Kaleth Wright told airmen this week he believes suicide is the biggest problem the service faces.

“Let’s take a moment and breathe and spend a little time on our airmen and their resiliency, and make sure we’re not missing anything when it comes to suicide and suicide awareness,” Wright told Air Force Magazine during a visit to Tinker AFB, Okla., this week.

Goldfein penned a letter to commanders explaining the decision to stand down, while Wright filmed a video. The pause is expected to mirror last year’s safety-focused stand-down. Leaders ordered that stop following a series of crashes and other safety incidents across the service.

Suicide happens “sometimes with, and often without, warning,” Goldfein wrote. “Make this tactical pause matter. Make it yours and make it personal.”

This time, commanders must stop most operations on a day that best suits their mission and gather their units to discuss resiliency and mental health, and to ensure airmen are well. Most of the details are up to local commanders, though Air Force headquarters is providing some resources.

Wright urged leaders to use all the tools available to design a suicide-prevention program that works best for their wing: “We trust commanders,” he said.

Goldfein seeks feedback from commanders during AFA’s Air, Space, and Cyber conference in September on what they learned from the stand-down.

“Taking care of our airmen and their families so they can take care of the mission is our most sacred duty as leaders,” Goldfein wrote.

While each suicide is unique, the service has studied each of this year’s nearly 80 deaths to find shared elements.

“As we peel back the onion on many of these cases, on occasion, we see some common threads: Relationship problems, sometimes discipline issues, things of that nature,” Wright said. “It’s really hard to kind of nail down the why—why there’s been such an increase.”


3 veterans die of suicide over 5 days at VA facilities in 2 states Travis Fedschun


Three U.S. military veterans took their lives within 5 days of each other at VA facilities in 2 states earlier this month, prompting a call for action by lawmakers.


The first death was reported on April 5, when the body of 29-year-old Gary Pressley was discovered inside a vehicle in the parking lot of Carl Vinson VA Medical Center in Dublin, Georgia.


Pressley had a gunshot wound in his chest and was pronounced dead at 8:45 p.m., Laurens County Coroner Richard Stanley told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.


Pressley’s family said he was medically discharged in 2012 after a bad car accident and struggling with mental health care, according to the newspaper.


His mother, Machelle Wilson, told WMAZ-TV that Pressley’s sister called the VA to tell them her brother was threatening suicide from their parking lot just moments before he killed himself


“He told his girlfriend he was going to do it in the parking lot, so they could find his body, so somebody can pay attention to what’s happening, so other vets do not have to go through this,” she told the television station.

Twenty veterans take their lives each day; national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin reports.


The following day in Decatur, Ga., 68-year-old Olen Hancock of Alpharetta killed himself outside the Atlanta VA Medical Center. Hancock had been seen pacing the lobby of the building before going outside and shooting himself, WSB-TV reported.

Continue reading

Western Michigan University: Suicide Prevention Program





Facts About Suicide


Suicide is preventable. Most suicidal individuals desperately want to live; they are just unable to see alternatives to their problems.

Most suicidal individuals give definite warnings of their suicidal intentions, but others are either unaware of the significance of these warnings or do not know how to respond to them.


Talking about suicide does not cause someone to be suicidal.
Suicide occurs across all age, economic, social, racial and ethnic boundaries.


Suicidal behavior is complex and not a response to one problem that a person is experiencing. Some risk factors vary with age, gender, or ethnic group and may occur in combination or change over time.


Surviving family members not only suffer the trauma of losing a loved one to suicide, they may themselves be at higher risk for suicide and emotional problems.



Statistics are based on the latest year for which we have national statistics, 2016.
U.S.A Suicide: 2015 Official Final Data


Suicide is currently the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. This translates into an annual suicide rate of approximately 14 per 100,000 people dying a year by suicide (44,193 a year), out-ranking homicides (ranked as the 16th leading cause of death).

The suicide rates decreased from 1990-2000 from 12.5 to 10.4 suicides per 100,000. Over the past decade, however, the rate has again increased. Every day, approximately 121 Americans die by suicide or approximately one person kills themselves every 12 minutes. (CDC)

In 2015, there were 1,104,825 attempted suicide in the United States. Approximately one person attempts suicide every 31 seconds.

It is generally estimated that there are 25 attempts for one death by suicide.
Between 25 and 50 percent of people who kill themselves had previously attempted suicide. Those who have made suicide attempts are at higher risk for actually taking their own lives.

Each suicide intimately effects at least six other people (estimated). In 2013, it was estimated that one in every 63 Americans became a suicide-loss survivor.

The most commonly reported means of completing suicide, across all groups, was by firearm (49.8%), followed by suffocation or hanging (26.8%), poisoning (15.4), cutting (1.7%) and drowning (1.2%).

Mental health diagnoses are generally associated with a higher rate of suicide. Psychological autopsy studies reflect that more than 90 percent of completed suicides had one or more mental disorders, most notably depression. (NAMI)

Continue reading

PTSD picks the very, very brave soldiers, also



“Hacksaw Ridge”

“The true story of Pfc. Desmond T. Doss, who won the Congressional Medal of Honor despite refusing to bear arms during WWII on religious grounds. Doss was drafted and ostracized by fellow soldiers for his pacifist stance but went on to earn respect and adoration for his bravery, selflessness and compassion after he risked his life — without firing a shot — in the Battle of Okinawa.”


Over a 12 hour period, demonstrating superhuman strength and courage, he lowered 75 wounded comrades to safety. Two days later he returned to that Ridge and was wounded.


The movie ends with this euphoric life of grandeur, Desmond lauded and decorated with fame and glory. The real story was he suffered from crippling PTSD the rest of his life. He lived as an invalid for years, depending on his wife to take care of him. Nightmares haunted him until death.



The idea that weak soldiers get PTSD and strong ones do not, is almost abusive in nature.



This statement pisses me off and violates everything my blog and volunteering stands for.


There is a small percentage of people who are resistant to PTSD but that is under 5%. The rest of us are vulnerable. In battle placing a soldier at the front for extended periods increases PTSD significantly. Redeployments have also added to this epidemic of not only PTSD but suicides.


Soldiers with PTSD will not seek help if you strengthen that stigma of being weak causes PTSD.   This statement could not be more ignorant or uninformed.


Being vulnerable, accepting our weakness are part of the healing journey.
22 suicides a day is the opposite.


A great friend loses her battle with Bipolar disorder



I found out Thursday at my mindfulness group, Mechelle had committed suicide. She had a troubled childhood complicated by bipolar symptoms.

This news was shocking for all that knew her. She had changed her life, exhibited incredible bravery, discipline and focus. I met her at NAMI, she was a volunteer, always helping others to a fault.

I have facilitated a mindfulness group for five years. Mechelle improved the most, overcame the most and worked the hardest of anyone in those five years. She was an inspiration to others in my group. Her insight always made a great dynamic foil for my technical expertise.

This is shocking for all that knew her. I have been lost, scratching my head, trying to understand. Balancing her meds  brought intense fear into her life. She had other stressors she kept secret.

We will never find out what happened. Her life was the best for three or four years until something went wrong.

For me, not being a trained therapist.  I now see the danger of helping at risk people. Earlier this year I received a text from Jennifer’s niece. Jenifer followed me the longest, healed and found self worth for the first time in her life.

She also made great strides in healing. A few months ago that text informed me she passed away overnight.  

This year I have lost the two ladies that I have helped the most. It shakes me to my core. After much thought, my take is that I helped them enjoy the best part of their lives.  

I judge my giving as positive and my journey more difficult than I imagined. I see how life is so unfair.

It reminds me that all we have is today. We may be gone tomorrow. Hug those you love and tell them, express it.

Like a busy emergency room’: Calls to suicide crisis centers double since 2014 7:50 am EDT July 20, 2018





The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline saw calls double from 2014 to 2017, an increase that coincides with rising suicide rates in the USA.


The lifeline answered more than 2 million calls in 2017, up from 1 million calls in 2014, according to its latest figures. More than 1.5 million calls reached the prevention network in 2015 and again in 2016.


The nationwide group includes more than 150 crisis centers, plus national backup centers to assist local lines.


The recent high-profile suicides of celebrities Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain have led to more public attention about the issue and various helpline services available nationwide, prompting more people to call.


“Due to media events and increased public awareness of suicide prevention and the lifeline’s services, more people are aware of this resource and are getting help and support,” spokeswoman Frances Gonzalez said. “The lifeline has been proven to de-escalate moments of crisis and help people find hope.”


Suicide rates increased more than 25 percent from 1999 to 2016, according to the latest figures by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, released June 7.

Continue reading

Opioid lawsuit targets rich family behind drug that fueled US crisis Sackler family, which owns Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, accused of fueling addiction while boosting profits

73473615-1842-4E00-8F31-5065EB9A653CPhotograph: George Frey/Reuters

The Guardian:
Joanna Walters and agencies
Tue 12 Jun 2018


The prescription painkiller OxyContin at a pharmacy. The lawsuit takes the unusual step of personally naming the company executives.
The prescription painkiller OxyContin at a pharmacy. The lawsuit takes the unusual step of personally naming the company executives.


The state of Massachusetts on Tuesday sued the maker of the prescription painkiller OxyContin, which has been blamed for spawning America’s opioids crisis, naming leading executives and members of the multibillionaire Sackler family that owns the pharmaceutical company.

The lawsuit accuses the company, Purdue Pharma, of spinning a “web of illegal deceit” to fuel the deadly drug abuse crisis while boosting profits.

Their strategy was simple: the more drugs they sold, the more money they made, and the more people died
Maura Healey, state attorney general
Purdue Pharma is already defending lawsuits from several states and local governments, but Massachusetts is the first state to take the unusual step of personally naming the company’s executives in a complaint, the state attorney general, Maura Healey, said. It names 16 current and former executives and board members, including the chief executive, Craig Landau, and eight members across three generations of the Sackler family that wholly owns Purdue.

The lawsuit alleges Purdue deceived patients and doctors about the risks of opioids, pushed prescribers to keep patients on the drugs longer and aggressively targeted vulnerable populations, such as the elderly and veterans.

“Their strategy was simple: the more drugs they sold, the more money they made, and the more people died,” Healey said on Tuesday.

Purdue, based in Stamford, Connecticut, issued a statement saying it vigorously denied all the allegations and looked forward to presenting “substantial defenses” to the claims in the lawsuit.

“We share the attorney general’s concern about the opioid crisis. We are disappointed, however, that in the midst of good faith negotiations with many states, the commonwealth [of Massachusetts] has decided to pursue a costly and protracted litigation process. We will continue to work collaboratively with the states toward bringing meaningful solutions,” it stated.

Maura Healey, the Massachusetts attorney general, has sued the maker of OxyContin over the deadly opioid crisis.
Facebook Twitter Pinterest
Maura Healey, the Massachusetts attorney general, has sued the maker of OxyContin over the deadly opioid crisis.


Purdue, along with some other painkiller makers and drug distributors, is currently facing more than 300 lawsuits from city and county authorities across the country. The lawsuits have been corralled into one multi-district case in a federal court in Ohio. The judge in that case has been pushing for a huge, quick settlement to compensate victims and assist in what the government has admitted is a public health crisis, in the way the so-called “Big Tobacco settlement” happened against cigarette companies in the 1990s. But some experts are calling for the case to go to trial in order to oblige the pharmaceutical companies to produce more evidence in the discovery process.



Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: